We were so thrilled to read this reflection on our first grade handwork curriculum, we could not wait to share it with you! We were so moved, and grateful, this is exactly what we strive for. Thank you, Betty Staley, for being such a guiding light for so many of us, we hope to follow the path you have lit for us. Here is a link to the online curriculum: https://www.waldorfhandwork.org/home-school-curriculum
Betty wrote: "If you were on a desert island and wanted to teach handwork to a group of children, you couldn’t do better than enrolling in the Homeschool Handwork Curriculum course and starting with the focus on the first grade. However, you don’t have to be on a desert island. Anywhere that you are located, you may wish to work with a group of children and show them the way.
You will be armed with a treasure trove that would allow you to understand the relationship between child development and handwork, how handwork integrates with other subjects, strengthens the child’s will and helps children create items of beauty and usefulness. This course will explain why you are doing each project. You will find clear directions how to proceed, as well as verses and stories to help the children use their imagination, and so much more. Next you will be led to what projects you can do. You will have a choice of many different projects just right for the first grade. If you need help, there are videos clearly showing you what to do. It is as if you have a friendly partner, modeling, explaining, and helping you along the way.
Although the program offers specific instructions how to keep the children’s attention, and how to carry out the activity, you are also given a great deal of freedom how to shape your classes.
This course is not only for teachers in a homeschool environment. It is useful for any teacher who wishes to deepen their understanding of what, how, and why handwork serves the child. And just a little secret, it is also very helpful for adults who want to develop their own relationship to handwork, who will follow the whole course through the grades, and experience the journey of self- enrichment. Elizabeth Seward and Shellie Smith have designed this course based on years of experience teaching children and teachers. What a great contribution to sharing handwork with children!"
Betty Staley, Waldorf educator, international lecturer and consultant, and author. Bettykstaley.com